For those of us who have started an online business the dream of making it on our own is at the forefront of our desires. We wake up every morning full of ideas about how we can make our business successful and we spend our days eagerly working towards our goals.
But while on the journey we encounter the inevitable obstacles that come with owning a business. Some come at the whims of bad luck, such as a hard drive crashing, while others are self imposed.
From my own experience as an entrepreneur it seems like I’m my own worst enemy. Whether it is laziness, lack of focus, or the inability to manage my team, there are four common mistakes that I’ve observed not only within myself, but in many other entrepreneurs that are trying to make it online. Here are some common mistakes we all tend to make, as well as some possible methods to move past them:
Fear of failure - This is perhaps the biggest sticking point for people when they set off to create their own business. Failure is an uncomfortable emotion and most people will do just about anything to avoid it. This is the single most common reason why most of us don’t really go after our dreams, and even for those of us who do, fear of failure is usually the reason we subconsciously place obstacles in our own way.
An important lesson to consider here is that failure is actually a part of success. If we can get comfortable with failure, and realize that is part of the journey, we can face it head on and move past it to our goals. Let’s not forget the lesson of colonel Sanders and Thomas Edison. They saw each failure as a stepping stone to success.
Refusal to take responsibility – Many of us, including myself, like to point the finger at outside circumstances when things don’t go the way we want them to. If our product fails were more inclined to look for someone to blame than a way to fix it.
Successful entrepreneurs, on the other hand, all have one quality in common- they all take full responsibility for the success or failure of their business. They get involved in every aspect of their campaigns and never leave anything to chance. They want to know what is happening and where, and they if something isn’t working they will roll up their sleeves and tweak it until it does.
Lack of motivation – Contrary to what many websites and advertisements tell us, making money online takes a lot of work and dedication. The most successful names in the business didn’t get to where they are with a stroke of luck (well most of them anyway), they got there with good old fashioned hard work.
For those of us who fall on the lazy side of the fence, getting ourselves to sit down in front of our computers each day and put in an honest day’s work is often easier said than done. That’s why it is extremely important to work on something that you are passionate about. When you love your product or service and truly believe in it, it will be that much easier to stay motivated.
Procrastination – Many of our ideas don’t get past the drawing board because we know implementing them could make us fall victim to the three previous sticking points. We fear we’ll fail, we’re afraid to take responsibility, and we lack motivation. All these combine to form procrastination, which is an entrepreneur’s worst enemy.
The only solution for the “Toxic P” is, to quote Nike, “Just Do It! There comes a point where we have to peel ourselves off the couch, sit down in front of our computers, and do SOMETHING. I’ve found that once I start doing anything, anything at all, the motivation will eventually come and I’ll be able to put together a successful day.
One thing to remember is that you are not alone with your struggles. We all battle with these, and we all have to find motivation to continue moving towards our goals. Just be patient with yourself, recognize your weaknesses, and take steps every day to move past them. With a little persistence even the worst of us can make a handsome living online.